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Washington’s cannabis industry needs investment reform

Washington’s cannabis industry needs investment reform

March 20, 2019 |

Every year our Legislature grapples with improvements for the cannabis industry. This year lawmakers are debating policy that would allow cannabis businesses to access capital investment from out-of-state. Alaska and Washington are alone in banning this practice, a freedom already available everywhere else adult-use cannabis is legal. As the tide of legalization is rising, and medical use increases, Washington must unleash its pioneers to do what they do best — innovate, drive the market, define new possibilities and succeed.

Our cannabis marketplace is artificially constrained — putting small businesses at a disadvantage when competing against better-financed businesses who already have deep-pockets in-state. A successful small business without a well-heeled family member or wealthy in-state investor often cannot expand to distribute statewide, for example. Imagine if any of the software giants from our state had been restricted from investors outside of Washington. Initially it might be OK — every place has a community with some affluence. But as the market grows, there are few left to invest within the geographical borders of a single place. And in cannabis, the limitations are apparent quickly, especially while financial options are also restricted due to federal banking regulations.

Washington’s cannabis industry needs investment reform






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